With the pandemic still in sight, Pinoys are finding ways to sate their hunger while keeping safe social distance. Fortunately, many restaurants and alternative dining joints are adapting their facilities to accommodate hungry patrons through al fresco dining.
Satisfy cravings the safer way by making your way to Northern Luzon’s Instagrammable al fresco destinations. Below, we round up some noteworthy ones you can add to your list!
Note: We are constantly updating this list with dining destinations in Northern provinces. If you know a hidden gem in the region, hit us up in the comments section!
Rainforest Kichene by Chef Vince
This mid-range, forest-themed resto in Pampanga lets you experience what it’s like to dine in the wild. Adorned with intricately designed leaf chairs, creeping vines, and massive plants (think alocasias and giant pothos), plantitos and plantitas will feel right at home.
The resto was conceptualized and owned by Chef Vince Garcia, a staunch advocate of Kapampangan cuisine and the creator of VG Bakery.
The menu is quite extensive, focusing on Italian, Mediterranean, Creole, and Western dishes. Bestsellers include their USDA-certified Angus steak, paella, salt-crusted lechon belly, and organic salad with edible flowers. You’ll also find grilled seafoods, as well mouthwatering sandwiches and desserts.
Be sure to message prior to visiting as dine-in is strictly by reservation only. Otherwise, you can have request delivery or takeout.
- Business name:
- Address: 13 I Pope Bldg., Greenfields Commercial Complex, Sindalan, City of San Fernando, Pampanga
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Contact: 0917-704-4500/0968-396-8401
- Operating hours: Monday 9 am to 7 pm/ Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday 10 am to 7 pm/ Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday 10 am to 9pm
- Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/rainforestkichenebychefvince/
- Google Maps link: https://g.page/rainforest-kichene?share
Traveler’s Food Station and Pasalubong Center
This budget-friendly joint affords customers sweeping views of Bataan’s scenic mountains while gorging on their favorite Filipino dishes. Because of its mountainside location, it’s usually cold and foggy, so bring a jacket when you come.
Traveler’s Food Station is famous with bikers for their signature P49 mami, below P100 silog meals, and unlimited kapeng barako. Customers also love their sinampalukan and steaming bulalo – both perfect comfort dishes for the nippy weather!
Other local dishes on offer are sisig, kare-kare, kaldereta, lechon kawali, and grilled seafoods.
The food station has Instagrammable spots for picture taking too, as well as a souvenir shop where you can shop for Bataan delicacies and trinkets.
- Business name: Traveler’s Food Station and Pasalubong Center
- Address: Orani, Bataan
- Contact: 0916 218 8346
- Operating hours: Wednesday to Monday 8 am to 8 pm
- Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Travelers-Food-Station-and-Pasalubong-Center-114100854108300
- Google Maps link: https://goo.gl/maps/R6nAEmMELjTRTzyV9
If you’re in Bulacan and craving some good ‘ol nachos and burritos, drive to Pulong Buhangin for one helluva of a ride at El Santo.
Only opened in March this year, this hip, psychedelia-infused al fresco bar and restaurant features pocket-friendly yet authentic Mexican favorites that are so yummy, they normally sell out before the day ends. If you aren’t able to go early, you may arrange for pickup or delivery.
Get your hands on corn esquites for as low as P55, tacos starting at P60, and naked burritos and classic burritos ranging from P150 to P199. The servings are hefty too, and great for sharing with friends and family.
- Business name: El Santo Taco Bar and Restaurant
- Address: Block 6 Lot 12 Gumamela St. Garden Village, Brgy. Pulong Buhangin Sta. Maria Bulacan
- Contact: +63 968 438 0146
- Operating hours: Tuesday to Sunday 2 pm to 9 pm; Delivery from 11 am to 5 pm
- Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/elsanto.ph
- Google Maps link: https://goo.gl/maps/BTT2aFQsphY4MVmi7
The Modern Katuga
Now, if you’re hungry but can’t quite put a finger on what cuisine to sample, head to The Modern Katuga. This charming food park in Bustos, Bulacan gathers local artisans that each specialize on different cuisines. There’s Itadakimasu for yummy Japanese Ramen, Mama’s for Vietnamese spring rolls and laksa; Order Up Food Truck By Chef Bob for wings, fries, and burgers; and Sisig Makisig for all kinds of sisig and dinuguan.
For drinks, try Kape Makisig’s Cordillera Iced Coffee for as low as P40. They also sell waffles. If you fancy wine, drop by The Modern Katuga’s drink station, which sells bubblies, plus the usual spirits and beverages.
While waiting, you and your companions can rent games like darts and ring toss (P10), or play Giant Uno (P50).
- Business name: The Modern Katuga
- Address: Purok 1, Cambaog, General Alejo G. Santos Highway, Bustos, Bulacan
- Operating hours: Monday to Sunday 3 pm to 10 pm
- Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/TheModernKatuga
- Google Maps link: https://goo.gl/maps/P1bD7nToe9QNPFZL7